by Rawq Elrid (Doug s.) 14-19 SS
An uncommonly relaxed, mild-mannered dwarf sits near the fire hearth of the Black River Island Tavern. Two patrons notice blood stains spotting through the dwarf’s light robes and sit down to inquire about the source of his wounds. He looks up casually at the pair of young adventures and reviews the course of the last five days.
“…the big water may look like rolling hills, but definitely do not feel like them on a long journey. The heat and humidity on this island are difficult to adjust to, unless you’re a dwarf, of course. The bigger concern in this settlement is a lack of solid structures. Nothing beats comfort of a stone building, especially to defend against the heavy weather and all the foul beast that can emerge from the dark waters surrounding this village. Stone walls are also a must…and I am planning to rectify that situation once I get my callused hands on some granite slabs from the Hills. It’s just not right to build homes and businesses completely from twigs and branches. I want to apply my stone-craft to help Dougal Ainsley fortify his tower and the community he has worked so hard to develop.”
“Oh! You want to hear about my flesh wound. Well, now…that is a more enlightening tale. Being surrounded by water nearly every step of our journey through the Black River marshlands was unsettling enough, but the constant buzzing and chirping and croaking of the wildlife plus the dense vegetation took some getting used to. I took comfort in my elven companions who appeared quite at home in this teaming environment.”
“Our first objective was to assess the bullywug infestation and the structural condition of Fort Providence, located in the northeast area of the marsh. Udoroth, the rather large, golden wyrm-man standing over there at the bar, was stationed at the Fort some time ago and believes the fortification to be a key rally point for further exploration into the ancient lands to the north. My elven friends, Ayten and Kanyu, proved to not only be well within their element, but stealthy too. We were able to spot a large encampment of frog-men in the fort and confirm that the mostly wooden structures were in severe disrepair. Nothing four tons of stone couldn’t fix. I envision a grand stronghold can be maintained on that high-ground with very minimal upkeep required.”
“The four of us traveled much further up the river to find route markers utilizing carvings of the mercenary organization known as The Shield. We proceeded past that junction and forged our own route to the west. I carved my own symbol as route markers into the riverbank trees…in fact, here is the symbol I utilized.”
“There were several large creatures that inhabited this region that we observed from a distance from their watering hole. But the best was yet to come! Just another hour up the river line, we discovered a stone obelisk engraved in some ancient writing. We are attempting to decipher it once back to the mainland. Better still, the marker indicated the start of a stone road, long over-grown, but still in good condition overall. This pathway led us to a stone temple or keep of some sort just a mile or so from the obelisk. Unfortunately, we were spotted by some rather bulky, bipedal lizard warriors sporting spears and shields. Knowing that our curiosity significantly out-weighed our combat skill, we were able to escape without incident…because the knowledge of our discovery was more important than a handsome battle scar. Ha! Would either like to refresh your drinks? No? Okay. Where was I…?”
“Ah, yes. Battle scars were not too hard to find from that point forward, however. On the first evening of our return trip to the island, our party was ambushed by bush-like animations controlled by some wild tree witch. We were able to crush the attackers, but the cackling conjurer disappeared quickly into the march under cover of darkness. A small threat for sure, but it was disturbing enough to make for a somewhat restless camp. The next day, we ran into a small group of bullywug scouts. Once we were spotted, these clever creatures sounded horn to signal reinforcements, so we made haste to stable high-ground and set a defensive position…not much time later, three waves of frog warriors advanced on us. Ayten and Kanyu targeted several of the creatures with their magicks and ranged weapons. Udoroth thinned their ranks with ranged weapons, dragon fire and his mighty greatsword. I was glad to have a seasoned soldier with us in this instance.”
“ME? Well, I tend to utilize a more face-to-face approach to defending myself and my companions. Growing up in the hill country tends to make a person hard and callous like the foundation of the rolling foothills themselves. I defeated a couple of the angry beasts myself, but not without some pride marks. I should be fine by the morning. None to worry. I will say that we initially wanted to communicate and reason with the bullywug, but they seem to want no part in making peace or small-talk. If you plan on wandering out to the marshlands soon, bring a fine weapons and your running boots. These slimy beast move very fast and are armed to their bulging eyes! They also are organized enough to communicate back to Fort Providence to get help. That stronghold is proving to be a key location to take a stand, if we all want to explore the origins of our ancestral lands. <Yawn> Hate to speak and run, but I have some healing to do and I promised Hurlee that I would review her kitchen to make a list of supplies I can bring back from the mainland. Good night!”
The journal entries here are provided by the active player characters participating in the Detroit Marches.
All Abaza Amaranth Aredhel Lethe Astrid Gilrin Atuji Of Clan Greatscale Audra Ayten Gilrin Basil Benedict Greenfield Black River Swamp Blackscale Brea Daergle Brynn Bryn Naikaho Cavalier's Watch Chat Clan Shimmerscale Crimson Surgeon Cylowboborow Nonsoon Demogorgon Diamondshard Banwyze DILONDORG KAAL Doros Doross Dorros Dredge Dufdor Dwain Eilis Eilis Gilrin Eladrinne Escobar Fagan Far Reach Fort Providence Gator Rock Genji The Wererat Glin Ybendawien Droat Golden Apple Great Cataclysm Griffin's Roost Grildor Trueforge Haldor Kemleigh Ham Hamilton Hekili Nalani HEYKITD GETOFF MELAYN Icegate Jerimiah Jerwin Jinn Kanyu Il Senya Kathra Kegrove Kellen McCall Kenku Kiera Lyssandria Kohaku Ruim Koltalon Kresh Krolan Kunyata Kar Leatherhead Liam Buckham Liana Lindir Lizardfolk Longtail Lucretzia Borgia Makani Pahili Malmir Merelda Meznen Midden Heap Mindartis Morgrimm Naill Amakir Namfoodle Nehi Xum Nehi-Xum New Cadeni Njord Noric Synphase Noxochiyotl Obelisks Of The Bayou Omgar Onen Peter The Wolf Phoncledeh Player Character Journal Entry Polar Bear Polg Pollen Quinzli Rabbits Ralthor Rawq Elrid Rhogar Roscoe Greenfeld Rotten Morgan Bonecrusher Rube Lastname Ruins Salazar Sang Woo Ser Mathius Shaena Tosscobble Silent Mockingbird Som Sorrel Summerport Syndar Beratos Tabaxi Tainted Falls Teddy Bear Tharrus The Fist Theobold Peacekeeper Thur’a’ugh Tormund Firehammer Tortles Treewalker Truss Stacianodel Udoroth UDOROTH THAMMILIDAAR Umberlee Underdark Valaquaraptors Vandil Varron Greensleeves Vengir Duskhallow Verloren Yuan Ti Zorak Dreadmast